Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by TeacherCuriousExplore, Mar 10, 2018.
Mar 15, 2018
I'm in east-central Kentucky.
That makes sense and sounds familiar -- I went to grad school in Southern Illinois (Carbondale) and did my student teaching in a former coal-mining town. Downtown Johnsonville had clearly once been bustling and beautiful, but all the old shops and restaurants were all boarded up and abandoned. There were actually two Walmarts in Carbondale -- Johnsonville was too economically depressed for a Walmart -- the first one was replaced by a second, larger store, and the company just abandoned the first one. I definitely am no Walmart fan and don't mean to blame a community for its own economic struggles -- the problems are real and deep-seated in this part of the country.
We have similar areas in central CA that were oil-company boom towns in the 1950s and 60s, and are now practically ghost towns, meth and welfare being among the only remaining options for income in some of the most isolated areas. I went to a couple of funerals last year in one of these sad places and couldn't find anything other than "convenience" stores selling junk food and cheap booze.
Mar 16, 2018
Wellllll, be careful what you ask for. I worked for Mariano's and almost ruined my knees from repetitive bending and stooping on the hard floors overnight. Stocking shelves is no picnic. I would find some middle road. Strive for 15-18 hours because they will give you 20. Ask around and see what departments have less demanding work. Any clothing store will hurt your back because of the millions of returns each night. Hard to get on days where you don't have to do returns or clean the store because those peach jobs are permanently taken by seasoned vets in their late 50's. Hard to get full time because nobody wants to give benefits anymore. And most grocery stores have unions. So be ready to see a big chunk of your part time $ being taken away from your every two weeks.
I miss the fact that Ultra Foods left our area. They had good deals and special cuts of meat I wanted. Food for Less is Mariano's poor cousin. You can find some of the same store brand items in there for half the price. Mariano's slogan is, "Shop well, eat well, live well." That's why they have a piano player and you can sit at the bar, order a complete rib dinner, and watch the game before/after you shop. The prices can be off the charts, but the selection is amazing. Especially good for health food nuts. Plenty of fresh seeds, nuts, spices by the pound. If you think about it, it makes sense. Poor people living in a food dessert are stuck with convenience stores that rarely carry fresh produce. Only meat they carry is bologna and hot dogs.
Dollar Tree, Family Dollar and Dollar General are good for some health and beauty products. Dollar Tree is perfect for school supplies. You can get all sorts of things for your themes and class parties at dirt cheap prices. But be careful because some of these products have that horrible gasoline smell as they are imported from China.
I stick to Jewels for meat and produce, Aldi's for some can goods that are just as good as name brand, eggs and margarine, and other things. Walmart for cleaning products. Sometimes you have to shop around.
Mar 17, 2018
My nephew worked for Publix and they matched his Publix stock purchases. It was a great deal for him.
My local Wal-Mart has the lowest priced groceries except for Aldi's.
An Aldi opened in the next town last month. I was underwhelmed. There is a much bigger selection and competitive prices at the Save a Lot store here in town. I was expecting something amazing based on what I heard others say. And it just . . . wasn't.
Mar 18, 2018
Prices are relative. If it is a economically depressed region, virtually all stores will seem "high." Where there are more choices, there will be a wider range of establishments to choose from. Face it, all businesses need to earn money regardless of where they are located. I don't find big box stores to be the enemy, nor are they the salvation of a time. It always comes down to supply and demand, and in a digital age, stores are impacted by competition from digital sources.
Mar 24, 2018
Well said vicklin....
Noticed Target’s price started going up too. But never would have imagined Toys R Us and Babies R Us closing!!! Don’t mean to highjack the thread...but wow!
Agreed - they were icons of our time that seemed timeless, but brick and mortar stores have been heavily impacted by "find the best price digitally, willing to wait a few days to save a little money." That little money we all save is the life blood of brick and mortar stores. I could also say that I was shocked and frustrated when the closest Sam's Club was closed without warning. Face it, if stores can't make a profit to pay salaries and the day in and day out bills that stores generate, pulling the plug sometimes becomes the only option. In the East, look what happened to A&P. The whole chain bit the dust.
This is why I say Amazon is the future of shopping. Pretty soon, an autonomous car or a drone will deliver your food to our homes and we will never have to get off the couch to buy food at the grocery. I can’t wait!
An automated driverless car recently killed a pedestrian - that might set them back for a while. (I get all of the tech related stories, and that one just came out.)
People kill each other all the time while driving cars, so I don’t think that’s significant.
There was a person riding inside this "driverless" car as well!!
I think it will be viewed as significant since this is still considered an emerging technology as far as public acceptance is concerned, but that's just my opinion.
I suspect the insurance industry will want to chime in on who is financially responsible - money is always a consideration.
You walk in my local Social Security Office, and the first thing you see is a kiosk. Check in, type your name, and social and your reason for the visit. Can't even see a live person until they call you "104-, Window A"
Apr 2, 2018
If you think Walmart prices are high then you wouldn't want to shop at the grocery stores in my area!
I shop at Walmart sometimes for gardening supplies or Christmas items but not much else. Where I live, none of the surrounding towns want that kind of store in their neighborhood so I don't bother going out of my way to shop there (not worth the 40 minute drive)!
Apr 3, 2018
Welcome to small town America! I live in a township of about 2200, and I work in the adjoining town. We have three schools, a hardware store, one grocery store, six gas stations, a library, half a dozen restaurants, and two fast food places. Life is actually pretty good in spite of the fact that we have to drive to get to any major retailers. People know each other. When there is a community activity like a parade or a football game or a musical, the town turns out. I have snowmobile and hiking and biking trails that literally run behind my house. I am not a hunter, but many people in this area are. However, I love seeing the deer, bear, bald eagles and turkeys when I am out walking or driving to work. To each hisl (or her) own. I am always grateful for variety!
Seriously considering retiring in a small town.....
Apr 4, 2018
My parents moved to a rural community with fewer than 1,000 residents when I went to college, but my four younger siblings grew up there. Believe it or not, some people actually love living in a small town. There were plenty of social activities going on within the community, especially around sports and church. If you're not into those kind of things, though, I could see how that wouldn't appeal to you.
This is why the mom-and-pops are closing -- people would rather sit at home and order stuff online than actually going out into the community and talking to the people at an actual store. We have a wonderful local grocery store that employs a lot of high school students, but also full-time working adults who have worked there for years. We recognize each other and have actual conversations. If everyone stopped going there and the shop closed, where would those people work?
This is a free country. We can shop wherever we want and I should not be shamed because I choose to shop online. At least online, I am guaranteed to find what I want. Further, I’m sick of having to spend gas going to the store, trying to find a parking spot, dealing with inclement weather, asking workers in the store to find items I wish to purchase, finding out they just sold out, dealing with rude customers, etc. Now, I can just search online, order, and it’s delivered to my house for a small fee. It saves me the hassle and I support a business I like. It’s a win-win situation for me.
Yes, of course, we are free to choose. I think we all need to be aware of the outcomes of our choices, though. If we are bemoaning the loss of community and good local options, we need to consider how our choices contribute to the problems we are experiencing.
There are times when I buy online, but I try to frequent some of our smaller specialty stores in the vicinity, because I know that their profit margins are small, but their knowledge and expertise quite valuable. We must keep a balance, or soon we will be buying only from companies that know the SKU number, but not what the product is for nor how it performs. Balance in all things. . .
I used to shop the Certified Stores. Independent, mom&pop little stores, but they all carried Certified and other local products. Two were replaced with Dollar Tree stores.
Went to the last Certified looking for my Kerns Apricot Nectar. Nothing, spot was gone.
I'd die of boredom
There’s barely anything to do. In my “small” town of 70,000 (and growing) I can get a massage from several different masseurs, go to shopping malls, tons of restaurants, walk my dog in over a dozen parks, go biking, go to several local swimming pools — there’s even a pretty sizeable water park; I often ride my all-terrain Segway on the more bumpy backroads and hillsides, and there is a small airport nearby so I go flying with a private instructor in the summer. What’s more, I have the Nugget, Target, Walmart, Costco, Trader Joe’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chile’s, In-N-Out, Subway, Quiznos, Sam’s Club, McDonald’s, Burger King, Del Taco, many sandwich shops, multiple car dealerships to choose from, and the list goes on and on. I couldn’t imagine not having all of these luxuries within a short distance. It just seems criminal not having all of these options to choose from.
Apr 5, 2018
Small towns definitely aren't for everyone, but it is perfect for those of us who like a slower pace.
DH is on spring break this week. He has made a bird feeder, repaired a bird house, and pruned broken limbs off trees. Today I was off work for my uncle's funeral. After the service, we had a meal at my cousins' church, which is in an even a smaller town. They have maybe 500 people. Then my DH and I drove 20 miles to the next town to pick up snacks and supplies for our trips next week. (We each have three day trips out of state with our 8th graders. DC for him. Tennessee for me.) Not exciting, but I haven't died of boredom in nearly 50 years. I think I'm safe.
Hey, you’ve made it work, so good for you!
That's quite a negative comment. She didn't have to make it work. It does work. You may not enjoy the way it works, but she didn't have to make it work.
I meant it as a positive. With clarification, it was meant to be read as, “Different strokes for different folks. What works for you may not work for me, but there’s nothing wrong with that.” Something like that.
I've lived in one of the most attractive cities in the country where a 2-bedroom apartment rents on average for $4300/mo. and a crummy fixer-upper costs $300,000+ in a lousy neighborhood. This sanctuary city has become a magnet for so many homeless people that some of the busiest streets now reek of human waste! Like most large cities, it has anything and everything that you might want as far as shops, restaurants, parks, museums, tourist attractions, strip joints, etc.
Now that I live in a small town in the Sierra foothills (pop. 26,000), I've grown accustomed to strangers smiling at me, drivers who insist on allowing me to go first, and not having to worry about someone breaking into my home. I enjoy not having to listen to my neighbor's music, but instead I get to hear a beautiful symphony of a variety of birds chirping and the wind blowing among the pine trees. Yesterday, after parking in front of a meter and wondering how many coins I would need, a man came from behind me and deposited a coin - just enough to bring it up to the required 6:00 p.m. end time. Small towns definitely lack many of the costly distractions that are available in cities, but they also offer a relaxing slower pace and an environment conducive to one's physical and mental health.
I completely agree. I’m not saying small towns don’t have their charm. What I like about my particular town is that it’s very safe to live in, it’s big enough that it gives me tons of stuff to do, and it’s small enough not to be overcrowded, dirty, and crime ridden.
Apr 6, 2018
I just signed up for a Kroger plus card. See I can use it at Food 4 Less. I’m all about loyalty cards. They do make a difference, IMO
I love my Kroger Plus card. I use the digital coupons every time we shop. DH uses the fuel points because he drives by Kroger on the way to work. I drive 4 miles, and he drives 25 miles. He gets the fuel points.
I like the mathematical thinking behind this!
I collect the Jewel Monopoly game cards for the coupons. Many items are free. I quit playing the game - it's a waste of time to me. But the coupons are good until May. I was never good at coupon shopping, because I usually lose them or they expire before I need stuff. Or it's the size nobody needs unless you have a small army! But the loyalty cards work when it's things you are going to buy and you know you can always use.
I think some of us who were raised in big cities can learn to appreciate small town life, once we visited a few times, and once we have grown a little older. You don't need all the hustle and bustle of city life when you can find peace and happiness without the rat race.
Being a surburbanite myself, I can certainly agree that things are easier in small towns having local libraries, banks and stores with local employees and less frequent turnover. It's much faster getting around, getting home, and less stressful overall, IMO.
Apr 7, 2018
I use the loyalty card but hate it. Stores used to give customers all of those sales before loyalty cards. Now they get to track you. Go to a store where you don't have a loyalty card and tell them you are out of town, most often a cashier will whip out a card or a customer behind you will allow you to use theirs. Why should customers have to be tracked to get a sale price?
Apr 16, 2018
I have to agree with you on this. I constantly use Amazon. Where I live, I can do the 2 hour prime delivery from my house. They also sell Whole Foods products so I can do the majority of my grocery shopping, sitting on the couch, and have it arrive at my door in 2 hours. It would take me about an hour to drive to the nearest Whole Foods so its worth it to add my $10 dollar tip or whatever and have it delivered right to my door in the same time frame that it would take me to go there, shop, and come home.
I know it probably is hurting the local Mom and Pop shops but I also don't have a lot of extra time and can't turn down the 2 hour delivery. Ugh!